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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Bikram Yoga

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Author Topic: Bikram Yoga
anthropisces
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Are there any other practitioners of Bikram Yoga here?

I began practicing it about a month ago. It is a completely different than any form of exercise I've engaged in before. Previously I was always a weight lifter. I'd never even done "regular" yoga before this.

For those of you unfamiliar, it is done in a hot room @ 104F plus or minus. 26 postures are done over a 90 minute period. I drink 2 liters of water during the class. I pretty sure that I sweat more than that during the class.

Does one's body temperature actually become elevated under these conditions? If so, do you think it is a good thing?

I actually know very little about the Yoga. A friend that I recently began freediving with is a practitioner and has always seemed so healthy and vital. I asked my neurologist if he were ok with it (I prefaced it saying that I'd be careful with my neck, which can be tricky). He said "absolutely I am ok with it."

I also let my LLMD know about it and there were no concerns.

Like many therapies there are claims made and some of these are from Lyme sufferers. I believe that it is the "official" position of the discipline that, when practiced regularly, that it will alleviate all symptoms of chronic disease.

It is meant to be practiced every single day although lesser frequency is engaged in by the majority I think. I started sporadically and then I did the every day frequency for a week and actually felt pretty good but I started all this in the middle of some arm pain that made me have to take some time off.

I'm adopting an every other day regime for now. Finding the 90 minutes for the class plus another 45 minutes for preparation and driving makes every day practice a further challenge.

So are there any other practitioners or any opinions on the subject? Has anyone gotten relief from Bikram yoga and if so, in what form?

Posts: 152 | From West Palm Bech, FL | Registered: May 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
jasek
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I love brikram yoga...but how you could do it that much is amazing. I was taking 3-4 classes a week mixing different types, trying to get 2 Bikrm classes in. I was very athletic before I was struck down, and I think this type of yoga is the hardest thing I ever tried.

I do know a lot of people do it for a detox. I've never checked my temp. after but I am always happy about the way I feel after a class.

Depending how bad your illness is, I'd be careful doing too much. I have execised myself into a herx more than once.

I'm not doing it now due to an out of control sleep disorder but hope to be back soon. I don't understand the 45 min. prep?, and remember your friend doesn't have a disease, but you do, so be smart.

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anthropisces
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45 minute prep includes drive time, getting to the facility early enough so that i can place my mat in a place that I want to stand, changing and getting my towels and water and such ready.

good advice though. I hope others chime in.

Posts: 152 | From West Palm Bech, FL | Registered: May 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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-
A few people can handle the heat but, for many lyme patients, heat can cause intense and long-lasting complications. So, ease into it and be sure to check with LLMD who has known you for a while.

I've landed in bed for months at a time with neurological setbacks requiring the need to learn to walk, talk, read and write again - all from getting too hot. For me, heat also sparks seizures (as it can for other lyme patients who experience seizures).

And, yet, for a few who can work up to it, heat seems to help. Listen to your body and if it works, great. If not, honor what your body is telling you. For most, warmth is as far as they can go and that can be helpful, too, as it gets circulation and sweating going, too.

While "MS" is often lyme (or other undiagnosed chronic stealth infection), one characteristic of "MS" is the inability to tolerate heat. In fact, heat can cause a "MS" episode that can cause permanent damage to nerves. After a few such episodes, that reversed but took months to do so, I figured out that I had to take a page from the "MS" patient care handbook and back off immediately if I started to feel sick from getting too warm.

This may or may not be a "herx" but it can also be flat out damage from heat. And that damage can be lasting.

For those who do fine with Bikram, there is just something very different in the way their bodies work from those who can't handle heat. The key is to just never push it even if previously, heat could be tolerated but one day it can't.

So, we might wonder, why can't most lyme patients take the heat?

Lyme often damages the myelin sheath around the nerves.

It also damages the entire endocrine system (adrenal stress and even adrenal shock are always looming from any excess). And the various nervous systems, part of which control our "heat regulators" - so, it may depend upon just how much damage has occurred as to how any particular person can tolerate heat.

The heart and the liver also have a lot to "say" about this. For most with liver stress, getting too hot can release an overload of toxins, too fast for the body to handle.

With lyme encephalitis (brain swelling) and meningitis (inflammation of neck), heat can be very dangerous.

And sometimes, we may not know until the day after a really hot hot-tub felt so good. That warning system may not be working. So, when testing this out, start slowly. See how the next day unfolds, too. And go from there.

By Chinese medicine, Lyme is characterized as a very hot "yang" condition with aggressive nature. Getting our bodies even hotter can be to our detriment.

So, just as some herbalists suggest avoiding the hot herbs such as garlic, and leaning toward ones that help drain heat and "cool toxic heat," so, too, leaning toward keeping the body from getting overheated from external forces can be of help for those with too much inflammation that is hot and aggressive in nature.

Still, if it feels right, going with a certain degree of comfortable warmth will be enough to promote sweating, circulation and clear stagnation. It's all about balance.
-

[ 10-25-2010, 11:50 AM: Message edited by: Keebler ]

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richedie
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I have always heard one of the ebst things for Lyme sufferers is heat. Many people benefit from dry saunas. I sometimes sit in a hot sauna for 15-20 at 150+ and it feels great. My LLMD recommends this as well to all patients.

--------------------
Mepron/Zith/Ceftin
Doxy/Biaxin/Flagyl pulse.
Artemisinin with Doxy/Biaxin.
Period of Levaquin and Ceftin.
Then Levaquin, Bactrim and Biaxin.
Bactrim/Augmentin/Rifampin.
Mepron/Biaxin/Artemisinin/Cat's Claw
Rifampin/Bactrim/Alinia
Plaquenil/Biaxin

Posts: 1949 | From Pennsylvania | Registered: Feb 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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-
One hundred and fifty degrees could kill some lyme patients.

Low heat, infrared saunas are most often recommended for most lyme patients. The heat can be low and still be very therapeutic.
-

Posts: 48021 | From Tree House | Registered: Jul 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
jasek
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I also heard heat and oxegen[thru exercise] is what kills off the bacteria. I was told by two llmd., that's why I stayed healthy so long. I was a compulsive exerciser and Cannot take any cold weather. That why I moved to Fl.. I feel best in the heat and get sick when it is mildly cold. I use infared sauna's and can get to 10 min staying at 140 degrees. My Dr. said get my temp to 102and keep it there as long as possible.

Keebler is right, M.S. patients cannot tolerate heatI know some. Makes me wonder?

But I do agree to take it slow, I am famous for excersing myself into a herx.

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LymeMom Kellye
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Bikram Yoga sent my daughter over the edge. She made it half way through one class and was in bed for 2 weeks straight after. 3 months after that class she was diagnosed with Lyme.

She hates the heat! Loves cool rainy weather. Feels her best.

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Lymetoo
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quote:
Originally posted by Keebler:
[QB] -
One hundred and fifty degrees could kill some lyme patients.

Low heat, infrared saunas are most often recommended for most lyme patients. The heat can be low and still be very therapeutic.

I know it would kill me and I'm not joking.

--------------------
--Lymetutu--
Opinions, not medical advice!

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richedie
Frequent Contributor (1K+ posts)
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Wow, I feel fantastic in One hundred and fifty degree saunas to the point I hate to leave. I know MS patients who swear by it too.

--------------------
Mepron/Zith/Ceftin
Doxy/Biaxin/Flagyl pulse.
Artemisinin with Doxy/Biaxin.
Period of Levaquin and Ceftin.
Then Levaquin, Bactrim and Biaxin.
Bactrim/Augmentin/Rifampin.
Mepron/Biaxin/Artemisinin/Cat's Claw
Rifampin/Bactrim/Alinia
Plaquenil/Biaxin

Posts: 1949 | From Pennsylvania | Registered: Feb 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Keebler
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-
richedie,

You must have something that is very unique in in the ability to handle that kind of heat.

I have a friend who has had a diagnosis of MS for 25 years. She has been confined to a wheelchair, paralyzed from waist down since getting too hot a very hot day one August over a dozen years ago. Caution is advised with even slight temperature change, even one degree can make a huge difference.

Demyelination is the most common cause for problems of heat intolerance for "MS" patients, but note that lyme also causes demyelination. So can other stealth infections (and we all know that "MS" is often an undiagnosed stealth infection such as lyme or Cpn).

"MS" patients are advised not to get too hot. Many have suffered serious and permanent damage from heat. That is why cooling vests are suggested for summer days. Symptoms usually go away after cooling down, but not always. There is no guarantee.

I pass out and go into seizures on days over 90 degrees. It does not have to be extreme heat to cause damage. And, yes, even lyme patients are not all the same but I've seen many (otherwise healthy) people pass out in the sauna (when I could still do that) because they underestimated the effect of heat on their heart. Cardiac involvement is common with lyme.

Warmth can be enjoyable, it can promote circulation and increase oxygen delivery. Warmth can promote sweat to move out toxins. Warmth can be good, cozy, relaxing - and safe. The extremes of heat are not necessary.

So, for those who feel the adverse effects of heat, remember that warmth can work wonderfully at a comfortable level. If it feels comfortable, great. The instant it does not, start to gradually cool down.

For those who can afford infrared saunas, they work differently and are intended to be used at low heat for minimum stress.
-

Posts: 48021 | From Tree House | Registered: Jul 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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